Bali is an iconic tourist destination with natural and cultural nuances. In addition to the natural beauty that spoils the eyes of every tourist who visits, Bali is also a paradise for magical and also unique sculptures. To further enhance the attractiveness and stimulate the enthusiasm of local and foreign tourists, Bali presents a masterpiece in the form of the largest statue in the world located at Garuda Wisnu Kencana.
The statue complex presents a statue of Hindu god Vishnu symbolized through Garuda. The construction also cost USD100 million or approximately Rp1.3 trillion, in which there were many struggles that had to be passed because there were many obstacles that emerged to complete this project.
After going through various obstacles and polemic related to the construction of a statue that is claimed to be the biggest in the world, finally during a long 28-year journey the statue of Garuda Wisnu Kencana (GWK) has stood perfectly on the top of Ungasan hill. This statue is a symbol for Hindus who become a majority religion in Bali. The 121-meter statue with 754 pieces of modules and a total weight of around 3000 tons, soared high in the sky and became the identity and pride of the Balinese people.
How not, this statue is even higher than the statue of Liberty in New York, America, which is famous throughout the world.
Titled “Swadharma Ning Pertiwi”, the maestro Nyoman Nuarta on Saturday (08/04/2018) proudly presented the work, which he painstakingly pioneered for 28 years from the era of President Soeharto to Jokowi.
His work is referred to as an offering to the homeland and gift of the 73rd birthday of the Republic of Indonesia.
During development, there were many obstacles and obstacles that Nuarta had passed for the establishment of the work which he called “self-esteem”.
Among them are social, cultural, even criminal problems.
One of the obstacles that had become a problem was the location of the statue of GWK. Vishnu’s location is believed to be in the north, but instead is in the south of Bali.
To make it balance, finally built a statue of Brahma on the south side, so that the position of the statue of Vishnu is currently in the north.
With full confidence, this statue was finally completed jointly by 120 artists, workers, and financial backers from across religions and cultures, so it is worth mentioning as the embodiment of Bhinneka Tunggal Ika.
According to Nuarta, this is a project of sincerity that involves self-esteem.
He reminded that the Indonesian nation has an extraordinary and noble culture.
However, the reality is now some of us turn to foreign culture.
GWK hopes that it can be an encouragement to return to the original culture, and the Indonesian nation should not be an inferior nation to follow the culture of other nations.
“Dignity of the nation is important, if we don’t have self-respect we will join the culture of people,” he said.
Nuarta recalled when she started working on the development of GWK since she was young until now she has become a grandfather.
From the 20-storey building that forms the foundation of the GWK statue, people can watch all of Bali from a height.
Not only that, even the islands of West Nusa Tenggara and Mount Rinjani can also be seen.
The Governor of Bali, Made Mangku Pastika said, GWK would also be a “must see destination” for tourists who come to Bali.
Because besides being able to watch the giant statue that is an icon of the Island of the Gods, this location will also be a cultural park that presents Balinese art and creativity, such as ballad, dance, theater, and so on.